In Conversation: 'Two and a Half Rivers' by Anirudh Kala

30-Oct-2021
6.00PM
Kitab Khana's Instagram

A Depressed doctor and a Young Dalit couple Caught in the Vortex of an Armed Insurgency.


A recently divorced doctor looking for seclusion, relocates to an isolated house on a riverbank. The following summer dead bodies start turning up in the river, on the roads, in trains and on city crossings. Everybody calls it the ‘Punjab Problem’, as if it were a stubborn crossword puzzle. The doctor is kidnapped and nearly killed, once by terrorists for helping the police and once by police for helping the terrorists.

A young Dalit girl, with the dream of becoming a dancer in her eyes, and her soulmate Bheem leave their caste-ridden existence behind and relocate to Bombay. They have learnt the hard way that the preaching of oneness by their religion does not work in the real world.

Drawing its title from the historicity of the Partition which has left in its wake only two and a half rivers to India from the land of the five rivers, Anirudh Kala’s novel offers a poignant commentary on the turbulent connection between religion and terrorism.

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The woods are lovely, dark and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep... -Robert Frost